It is easy for me to “lose track of time” when I am doing something I love or being otherwise stimulated. But under different circumstances I find myself very much aware of the passing minutes. It is sort of a rule I give myself. When the task or activity is dull I look at my watch and commit myself to endure it for a designated amount of time.
For example, although I love my children and love to hear the sounds of their play in the background of my daily rituals, I find that when I actually sit down to play with them it is a little tedious. I know that years from now I will regret that I didn’t “live in the moment” and appreciate the instructions I received from my four year old about which truck I should be and what it should say and do. But at times I do it just to fulfill my obligation all the while keeping one eye on my watch until I have “played” for whatever I predetermined to be an appropriate amount of time to relieve me of any guilt.
On Sunday afternoon at the cabin I took a nice nap in the upstairs bedroom which can get stuffy and warm in the heat of the day. When I woke up I needed some fresh air so I ventured out to the creek in the back where I put my feet in the arctic water that probably just days ago was snow at the top of Sawtelle.
As I sat there enjoying the pine tree panorama I felt like I could sit there forever.
Then I caught myself looking down at my watch and thinking “I will sit here until 3:15”.
It seems that I set these arbitrary time periods for myself when I am doing something I know I should do but some great force prevents me from feeling free of time. It is that urge that I should be doing something else, either because there is much to be done or because in truth I feel it is boring to sit on a log by a creek.
Whatever the reason for my impatience, I want to overcome it. I want to relish moments without any pressure to move on to life’s next compulsion. I want to get outside of time.
I believe that with practice this can be learned. If anyone has any suggestions, please share.